Skip to main content
FORK SCENE PART FIRST
But it may serve.—Our thought being now reflexed
To forces operant on this English isle,
Behoves it us to enter scene by scene,
And watch the spectacle of Europe's moves
In her embroil, as they were self-ordained
According to the nawe and liberal creed
Of our great-hearted young Compassionates,
Forgetting the Prime Mover of the gear,
As puppet-iv ate hers him who fulls the strings.—
You II mark the twitchings of this Bonaparte
As he with other figures foots his reel,
Until he twitch him into his lonely grave :
Also regard tJie frail ones that his flings
Have made gyrate like animalcula
In tepid pools.—Hence to the precinct, then,
And count as framework to the stagery
Yon architraves of sunbeam-smitten cloud*—
So may ye judge Earths jackaclocks to be
Not fugled by one Will, but function-free.
The nether sky opens, and Europe is disclosed as a prone and emaciated figure, the A^ps shaping like a backbone, and the branching mountain-chains like ribs, the peninsular plateau of Spain forming a head. Broad and lengthy lowlands stretch from the north of France across Russia like a grey-green garment hemmed by the Ural mountains and the glistening Arctic Ocean.
The point of view then sinks downwards through space, and draws near to the surface of the perturbed countries, where the peoples, distressed by events which they did not cause, are seen writhing, crawling, heaving, and vibrating in their various cities and nationalities.
SPIRIT OF THE YEARS (to the Spirit of the Pities)
As key-scene to the whole, I first lay bare The Will-webs of thy fearful questioning ; For know that of my antique privileges This gift to visualize the Mode is one ( Though by exhaustive strain and effort only}. Sec, then, and learn, ere my power pass again.
A new and penetrating light descends on the spectacle, enduing men and things with a seeming transparency, and exhibiting as one